16.01.2011 U20 Premier XV v Wanderers (H)

16/01/20112:30pmJ.P. Fanagan LeagueSt. Marys U21s 1st XV46 – 3WanderersHome

St. Mary’s V Wanderers (46-3)

The Squad:
1. Robert Ferris 2. Rory O’Donovan 3. Shane Kearney 4. Stephen Maguire 5. Ronan Lennon 6. J.J Clarke 7. Mark Darby 8. Darragh Keller 9. Chris Lilly 10. Darragh Fitzgerald 11. Owen Moriarty 12. Hugh McGovern 13. Steve Toal Lennon 14. Richie McMicken 15. Ciaran Collins.

Subs: Sean Carroll, Domhaill Drumm, Gavin Thornberry, Thomas Lamboley, Simon O’Donnell, Ryan O’Loughlin. Colin Sheridan

Another excellent team performance against a spirited but ultimately out matched Wanders team. While Wanders began the game well and scored the first points (penalty after 12 minutes), soon our pack began to dominate in all areas of the field. Our scrums were solid and strong. Our line-outs were well rehearsed and very well executed (credit due to Rory for accurate throwing all day) and our defence in open play was unflinching with the result that at no time throughout the game did Wanders truly challenge our try line.

While our fitness levels can always improve and were not helped by the extended lay-off over the Christmas (out last match was on 22 Nov last), today we demonstrated a sharpness and a determination which was not adversely affected by the break in competitive rugby. Credit therefore should be given to the coaches and indeed the squad for the training programme over the Christmas.

Central to our success today was the solid platform given to the backs by a very hard working pack. This allowed for a display of some excellent back line moves and strong running by Steve Toal Lennon, Eoin Moriarty and Hugh Mc Govern.

Chris Lilly, as we have come to expect from him, disrupted all the Wanders No 9. attempts to feed his back line and Ciaran Collins made some aggressive runs out of defence and indeed some excellent and timely defensive tackles.  Robert Ferris, Steve Maguire and Shane Kearney tackled aggressively and turned over many rucks and made some excellent carries when the opportunities allowed.

Ronan Lennon and JJ Clarke foraged well and as for Darragh Keller, his hat trick of tries was just reward for his overall performance. He is immense in attack, fearless in defence and gives the team play options in every part of the field.

Darragh Fitzgerald made an excellent return from injury with a cool head, excellent tackling and excellent positional play.

Other tries today were by Steve Toal Lennon, (who also kicked well at posts), Ciaran Collins and Rory O Donovan.

Overall an excellent 80 minute performance and an excellent begin to the new year.

Our next game is against Barnhall  (away on Sunday 23rd).